20 Life Lessons I Learned From Fist Fighting
Not all life lessons have to be learned the hard way… In this post I save you the pain, while also showing you how they apply to your business and love life.
“You’d fight this guy for me right?” My friend asked me after accidentally spraying part of his beer on a beast of a man and his upset girlfriend. The man stood up as my “friend” moved beside me.
Without surprise, Mr. Beast Man was upset. His curse words matched his body language… My friend opened his mouth again: “Take it easy man, it was a mistake. Plus, my friend will kick your ass.”
Have you had a friend that made you wonder how they have stayed alive for as long as they have? This guy was definitely one of those friends. It’s shocking to remember the type of friends I kept years ago…
I said “Let me apologize for my friend. We still wonder how many times he was dropped on his head as child.” Quickly I diffused the situation and Mr. Beast Man turned into Michael, a new friend.
In this moment my ego had finally dissipated enough for me to learn a new lesson:
1). Best way to win a fight is to transfer an enemy into an ally.
In high school nobody ever viewed me as someone that could fight, which was why I wanted to develop my ability to. It was a self preservation yet also egotistical endeavor.
Few people nowadays know this about me but many years ago I was very fast to get into competitive fist fights at party’s and small gatherings. I wouldn’t recommend anyone take the same process, but it ended up serving me in many ways.
In this post I intend to teach you some of my fist fight life lessons without you needing to go through the shady phase it took me to learn them.
2). Complaining about getting hit won’t stop the next punch (react to problems, don’t freeze).
Getting punched in the face will generally make you faster to react… It’s something about knowing another hit is quickly coming that makes you want to respond fast.
Unfortunately, other life problems aren’t rapid fire enough to force you to respond with the astute speed that will most benefit the situation. Which is sad, when realizing that some life experiences can feel worse than a couple punches to the face.
In life, problems are going to come your way, one of the worst things you can do is not react in time to prepare yourself for the next blow.
So, the next time you get rejected by a woman, loose out on some business opportunity, or experience something ruff, just remember:
While you wait in shock from whatever you’ve experienced, there is likely another hard knock coming down the line. Act fast to get out of the fog and into the clear.
3). Once you think you’re unbeatable, you’ll be proven wrong (never stop growing).
This is the polar opposite of lesson #2. Being confident is great. Thinking that you’re so great that you don’t have to take the moment seriously is just plain stupid. Stay on your toes in your business, your health, and your love life.
The moment you think that you don’t have to put in the effort to keep your lover attracted to you, is the moment their heart will begin to compare you to other potential options.
The moment you think that your business is infinitely successful, is the moment your competition will begin to see how they can overrun you.
4). Fear doesn’t really fade without immersing yourself in it.
Forethought will never give you all of the foresight that you’re hoping for.
Whether you’re trying to muster up the courage to ask a woman out, or getting ready to start a business, it’s best to jump in the deep end.
As long as you approach it correctly, bathing yourself in your fear will expand your comfort with it. Reach out, through the application at the bottom of the page, if you want help with doing this efficiently.
5). It’s not what you know, it’s what you can regularly perform under stress.
Intellectually knowing something doesn’t mean anything. Think about how many Marriage and Family Therapists “know” what you should do yet have a massively dysfunctional life.
Practicing something, occasionally, still doesn’t hold much value…
Being able to perform something, regularly, under stress is what actually matters. Can you consistently produce what you “know” when times are pressing.
Everyone has a plan of how they will perform under stress until that first punch hit’s them in the mouth.
It’s the same in life:
Your business idea is just an idea, that makes no money, until you begin to actually build it.
Your notion of how to be an outstanding lover, doesn’t mean much if you can’t muster up the courage to start it, or if you loose your cool when you feel insecure.
6). Sometimes your best lessons come from your biggest losses.
A lot of people technically “know” this concept, yet they have to be willing to look at where they went wrong in order to learn the lesson beneath the loss. You have to see where you could have improved and consciously work to make those changes.
Giving up, or acting like you didn’t mess up, won’t help you grow in any sense.
7). Characteristics are more important than fancy tricks.
Knowing the 15 steps to removing an opponents hand from your wrist, isn’t as impressive as an intelligent fighter who just hit’s you in the throat or heel stomps the high part of your foot.
Your barrel roll and spin kick isn’t impressive once someone knocks you out with a straight punch on your landing.
Your ability to break bricks isn’t impressive when the off duty linebacker that’s ready to tackle you won’t lay on the ground to let you prepare to split him in two.
Your nun-chuck skills are amazing. Too bad they are back at home in your closet…
What about your perfect “pickup artist approach” and impressive stories that you use to attract women. They still don’t work without the right characteristics behind them. If you have the essential traits to back them, then you don’t need the flashy story…
Fancy tricks don’t equate to anything if they don’t have habit, strength, speed, intelligence, and flexibility.
What fancy tricks are you focusing on that aren’t going to really help you?
Maybe a Ferrari and a fancy facade… Those things don’t fix an ugly character.
How about your “CEO” titled business card, that doesn’t actually get anyone to call you?
8). Put yourself through nerve racking experiences and smaller fears of yours will become more manageable.
Interestingly, I used to quiver in the presence of a beautiful woman. I’ve seen men’s egos shake to the core as a woman’s sexuality or anger builds in front of them. For me, a girlfriend expressing her anger towards me wasn’t fearful after having drunk men in my face and ready to throw punches.
The same goes for a boss of yours who may seem intimidating to talk to. A sales call you’re afraid to make. A social risk your afraid to take. Face some bigger fears and you’ll expand your emotional circuit breaker.
9). So what, you can hit… Can you take a punch?
In competition filled areas of life (love, business, fighting, etc.) you better expect to take some hits. With that being said, you better learn how to build a strong base to work from.
I can speak on this, but why not let Rocky Balboa teach it to you instead:
10). Your great plan will not go as planned… Prioritize action over the perfect strategy.
Your extraordinary business idea… Sorry but it isn’t bulletproof.
That great line that you have, to say to that girl, sorry it’s not going to make her love you. At best it’s going to buy you 15 more seconds of her attention. Then, like most men, you’ll freeze up and think, “Uh oh, what do I say next?”
You need to learn to adjust in the moment. You need to learn how to make powerful moves and respond accordingly, when they don’t go as planned.
11). If you give people a second chance when their ego is still hurt, they will likely try to hit you again.
I actually was a very forgiving fighter. In many street fights rather than continuing to beat them until they needed to go to the hospital, I generally gave them a second chance. “Are you done? Are you going to be cool?”
When people feel like they were just made to look like a fool socially, they will strive in whatever way possible to regain their social footing. Even if that means trying something that doesn’t really make sense.
Generally it’s best to defeat someone without destroying their sense of self… Letting your opponents keep their self image is often a good decision (plus it will make other people respect you more as well).
12). People strive to prove they’re a bad-ass when they fear, deep down, that they’re not.
I was fighting not because I had to, but because I felt like I needed to prove something to myself and others.
There are a lot of people out there looking to pick a fight to prove to themselves that they are of value. Let them pass rather than becoming their stepping stone.
13). Beating someone down typically doesn’t teach them a lesson (but sometimes it is needed).
Almost every man I ever beat, would strive to validate, in whatever way possible, that “he would have won the fight, but…(insert some ridiculous excuse here).”
Most hard headed people won’t learn their lesson by getting beat. That is, unless you beat your opponent so shockingly that it makes him second guess his actions in the future (it is still probably best to just walk away).
14). Chicks don’t dig fighting:
Even the women that say they think it’s hot, generally claim you’re a brute afterwards.
It’s best to fight only when it’s needed.
A flashy car won’t win over your most ideal woman. Nor will becoming the toughest man in the room.
15). Quiet confidence scares tough people more than loud anger.
My Dad taught me something a long time ago that really did work (because it became authentic to me). “Smile a bit… Like you have a secret they don’t know about. It’ll strike fear in someone that you’re about to fight.”
I Forgot about this lesson until I had a wrestling match in middle school… My competitor grinned at me just before the match started. I was pinned in less than 20 seconds. It was his fastest record and my most belittling moment of that year. Luckily that experience made me remember the lesson for years to come…
Generally, when I found a bully, I would be happy to reel his attention towards me. Since I didn’t look like a fighter, they always assumed I was a solid prey to pick on.
The fact that I was usually talking to a pretty woman, when they were trying to figure out how to stand out to the ladies, definitely attracted their attention to me, as well.
They were always thrown off by my uncontrollable grin, whenever I felt there was a good chance that we would fight.
People are used to others yelling. When you express one of the last emotions that they would have expected, it really throws people off.
This actually ended up being true in love relationships as well:
A lot of women are used to men getting loud… Women are used to men resorting to name calling, yelling, storming out of the room, etc.
It really brings a woman’s dramatic expressions to a halt when you don’t get caught up in the heated moment in the way that she expects you to.
This actually lead to something we teach in Vimbasi that is called: “Breaking emotional patterns”.
16). One of the most difficult moments will come when someone rocks your self assurance.
Your body can heal faster than your ego generally does. Yet both your ego and your body are critical to tend to.
Moments where I became too cocky and then got rocked a bit, really made me nervous for months afterwards. It made me think: “If that can happen, then maybe I’m not as good as I thought I was. What’s going to happen next time?”
When your confidence gets rocked, work fast to rebuild it, authentically. The longer you wait, the longer your fears and doubts will fester into something that seems too big to overcome.
17). Most people are loud, few are real.
Supposedly (by their claims) I fought a US Navy Boxer, a “Prize Fighter” from Mexico City, multiple Karate guys (one of which was a “black belt”), and many people that said, “You wouldn’t want to fight me.” I won the fight against each of these men, yet every one of the losses that I had were against someone who didn’t have a claim to fame.
Side note: When someone threatens you by saying, “you wouldn’t want to fight me”, it typically means that they are trying to resist fighting you (yet they still want to appear like a tough guy).
The quiet ones are the ones that are going to knock you out, no problem.
Similarly in love… Sometimes, the people that attract your attention in the loudest ways aren’t as powerfully beautiful as the ones that can do so quietly.
Don’t overlook the ladies and gentlemen that aren’t striving for your attention in overzealous ways.
18). Fail fast now, so you don’t fail in the battles that matter the most.
It’s better to get used to being hit in sparring matches than it is to have to learn, first hand, in real life.
I continually have to remind myself that it’s better to get used to taking blows in a new venture so that you can move forward faster and without fear.
You’ll grow in all areas of life when you feel like you can survive the consequences of things not going well.
So in whatever you’re facing now, ask yourself: “What’s the worst that can come of this?”
Then figure out a way for you to become clear and confident in how you would recover from it. Doing this small fear exercise can help you dramatically. Seneca, Ryan Holiday, and Tim Ferris speak very well on this lesson.
That’s why I’ve said for a long time that you can’t just teach a man how to attract a woman, you have to teach him how to survive rejection and the loss of love. Without that backup plan and resiliency, he will not take action consistently.
19). The fight starts before the first punch. Context means everything.
Much of winning, in any area of life, begins before the competition even steps into the ring.
It starts in your mind, your training, and the way you set the stage.
For example: You don’t want your opponent to think that you’re a bad-ass, you want them to feel overly confident… The first hit will be much more shocking to them this way.
This is actually one of the areas that I do consulting work for businesses… Can you set your customers up to win? Can you set the stage that is needed for them to value what you offer? Can you set your business up to progress easily or are you setting it up in a way that is going to limit you and your customers down the line?
Same is valid in Vimbasi Seductive Integrity… We teach a lesson about “setting the rhythm of the interaction”. In short, don’t establish a habit, lifestyle or character that you can’t (or don’t want to) live up to in the long run.
If you’re not the type to buy flowers and open the door in the freezing rain for a woman, then don’t start… NO ONE wants to feel like they got something that they didn’t opt in for.
Unfortunately, this is way too common in love. People start out being amazing, just to do a 180 later on, when they feel it’s safe to “be themselves.”
20). Other people will want you to fight their fights.
As you build your fame, don’t worry as much about your enemies, but instead, worry about the friends that will unintentionally tear you down.
For all the wealthy men reading this post, I’m sure you can relate. As you earn more money, not only do you have to stay ahead of the competition, but you have to be defensive around people that want to take advantage of things you have that they don’t personally posses.
However, don’t let this lesson turn you into an Ebenezer Scrooge. Skepticism will hurt your life, more than you can ever imagine.
- I had my tooth punched all the way through my lip 3 different times (screw you snaggle tooth of the past).
- I had some cut knuckles from punching people in the mouth (sometimes their teeth cut your knuckles).
- I was almost taken to jail 3 different times.
- I got threatened by a police officer after having 6 police cars surround me and tell me that I would be arrested if I was seen downtown in the following 2 weeks.
- I was sucker punched twice (because I was a sucker).
- I had some broken knuckles.
- I dislocated my shoulder more times than I can count.
- I had a very scared mother…
- And I had way too many egotistical men trying to fight me for a couple years after building up my reputation.
So in short, I (and other people) went through a lot of pain to be able to learn these life lessons and pass them on to you. So I would appreciate it if you passed it on. With this, hopefully, other people won’t have to learn any of these lessons the hard way.
From the man that likely has your back more than you do: